My ex-wife says that I should go out and find love.
This is wrong.
There are some people who should not date, who should not pursue “love,” and I am one of them. There is not a single love relationship in my life that has turned out well.
Even in the relationship, they never make me happy. They are an exercise in “making myself okay with things” and “learning to deal.” Love relationships are invariably painful, much more painful than just living life on my own, which is actually not all that bad.
In my life, when I have dated, I have been:
– Less emotionally healthy
– Less happy
– Less productive
– Less resilient
– Less connected to others
– Less disciplined
– More exhausted
– More stressed
– More in pain
I just honestly don’t understand why I would ever put myself through that again. It’s like a stimulus-response conditioned aversion at this point.
Just about every time in my life that things have been going really, really well, I’ve fallen in love—and then the wheels come off, I soon have despair in the pit of my stomach, I spend years in inner turmoil and pain, and then it ends and my life comes apart. Why do that?
Even after we break up, they hurt me. I have an accumulated list of exes stretching back to my teens. Every single one of them continued to cause me pain after the relationship, sometimes years after.
I’ve met the biological need to procreate, that’s done with. I think maybe she was right when she said that I was “not the marrying type.”
For another age and cultural milieu, I could have been. But in this one? Forget it. Anything I might want out of a relationship I can’t get out of one, even if I somehow manage to make myself okay with the infinite list of painful things that I do get out of one but desperately don’t want.
Modern relationships are structured precisely as “all of the things I least want out of life, and that will cause me pain, with none of the things I actually desire.”
So no, I’m not going to go “find love.” Just not. Because what gets called “love” these days is not something I need, and what I’d call “love” is not on offer and hasn’t been for fifty years at least.